Turkish yogurt soup is the perfect option for a light meal. This warm yogurt soup is simple, healthy, and naturally vegetarian and gluten free.
Turkish recipes are among my favorites. We started with Turkish eggs (cilbir) and now we have this delicious yogurt soup that I can’t wait to share with you!
Yayla Çorbasi, a delicious yogurt soup to try!
As you probably know by now, I lived in Istanbul for three years and learned a lot from my Turkish colleagues and friends about Turkish cuisine and how rich it is. I love Turkish food, because it always uses fresh and seasonal ingredients and simple cooking methods which results in delicious food every time. Like other Middle Eastern and Mediterranean cuisines, yogurt is a frequently used ingredient in Turkish cuisine.
Turkish yogurt soup, or yayla corbasi is a traditional Turkish soup that’s made primarily with yogurt. It’s a simple warm soup that’s perfect for cold days or days that you’d like to have a light soup that doesn’t require much work. We love having a bowl of hot yogurt soup in winter and I usually make it in a big batch to enjoy through the week.
Yogurt soup ingredients
To make warm yogurt soup, you need the following ingredients:
- Rice: preferably basmati or any long grain.
- Yogurt: we need plain yogurt, preferably Greek yogurt.
- Butter or ghee
- Dried mint: you can find dried mint on amazon or at local Middle Eastern and Mediterranean shops.
How to make yogurt soup at home
This Turkish yogurt soup is probably one of the simplest soups you’ll ever try. Start by cooking the rice with water until it completely falls apart. To do so, you need more water than you usually use to cook rice. Remember, the water and rice are going to be the base of this warm yogurt soup.
Mix yogurt, egg and flour and salt in a bowl. Add more water to the cooked rice and stir well. Take the rice off the heat. Using a ladle, slowly add a few ladles of that rice and water mixture to the yogurt and egg mixture. Stir well and mix.
Add the yogurt and egg mixture back to the cooked rice and water and place it over medium heat. Simmer for about 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Taste and add more salt if needed.
In a small pan, melt butter and saute dried mint for about 30 seconds until it releases its aroma. Add sauteed dried mint to the soup and stir well.
Serve yayla corbasi warm and top with more sauteed mint if desired.
My soup curdled after I added the yogurt to the soup!
The reason that your yogurt soup curdled is temperature. You need to make sure that the temperature in the pot where rice was cooked with water and the bowl where you mixed yogurt and egg are similar. To do so, take the pot off the heat. Then slowly add some of the rice and water to the yogurt and stir well. Repeat this step a few times until the yogurt and egg mixture is quite warm. Now using the same ladle, add the yogurt and egg mixture back to the rice and water.
How do you add yogurt to soup without curdling?
One thing that worries cooks about adding yogurt while cooking is that the food might curdle. To prevent curdling, you must add some of the warm rice and water to the yogurt and egg mixture and mix well to increase the temperature of the yogurt mixture. This step should be done slowly and gradually, meaning you need to add rice and water little by little to the yogurt and mix well after each addition.
What to serve with hot yogurt soup
Notes and tips to make Turkish yogurt soup
- The amount of rice for this recipe is 1/2 cup which might not seem enough. However, since the rice will be over cooked and would completely fall apart, it will multiply in size and would be enough for 4-6 servings.
- It’s best if you have the egg and yogurt at room temperature before you start cooking.
- Use a large bowl to mix the yogurt and the egg because you’ll need more space to stir in the water from the pot.
- Dried mint burns easily therefore make sure not to saute it more than 30 seconds. You can also use olive oil instead of butter.
Turkish Yogurt Soup Yayla Corbasi
- 1/2 cup basmati rice washed and rinsed
- 5 cups water see notes
- 1.5 cup plain Greek yogurt room temperature
- 1 egg room temperature
- 1 tbsp all purpose flour
- 1 tsp salt more if needed
- 2 tbsp unsalted butter see notes
- 2 tbsp dried mint see notes
- Place the rice and 3 cups of water in a large pot and bring to simmer. Cover and cook for about 40 minutes until the rice is fully cooked and has fallen apart. If after 40 minutes, the rice hasn't fallen apart, add one more cup of water and cook for 15 more minutes.
- In a large bowl, mix yogurt, egg, flour and salt.
- Once the rice is cooked and has broken into very small pieces, turn the heat off.
- using ladle, slowly add about 1 1/2 cup of the rice and water to the yogurt and egg mixture and stir well after each addition.
- Add the yogurt and egg mixture back into the pot. Stir well, turn the heat on to medium and bring to a low simmer.
- Simmer for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- In a small pan, melt the butter and saute dried mint for about 30 seconds.
- Add sauteed mint and butter to the simmering soup. Stir well.
- Serve Turkish yogurt soup warm.
- You may need to add more water depending on the rice and how thick you would like the soup to be.
- You can use olive oil instead of butter.
- Dried mint is available online on amazon or in Middle Eastern and Mediterranean ethnic stores.